Electric vehicles (EVs), their emissions, and future viability

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VeeDubTDI

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We just got back from a 1,655 mile trip to Grand Rapids and back. The trip went smoothly and we made five <20 minutes stops in each direction. Travel speeds were 75 - 85 MPH with temperatures ranging from the high teens to the low 30s. Total trip efficiency: 333 Wh/mile (3 miles per kWh or 101 MPGe).

We're just shy of 14,000 miles in 3.5 months with another 2,200+ miles on the schedule between now and Jan 2nd. :cool:
 
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turbobrick240

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I'm starting to see locally owned model 3's more and more up here. Up until now I was mostly seeing them at the Augusta supercharger station, and they were coming from Quebec, New York, Mass. etc. With my golf going back to VW in a couple of weeks, I'm torn what to do about a new ride. I'd love a model 3, but I'm not sure I can justify the expense. Maybe I should start looking for deals on a used model S. I feel like I need a minimum of 200 miles range. I might get a well used winter beater in the interim. The chevy bolt never really materialized in this area. I can't imagine who would want one over a model 3.
 

VeeDubTDI

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I'm starting to see locally owned model 3's more and more up here. Up until now I was mostly seeing them at the Augusta supercharger station, and they were coming from Quebec, New York, Mass. etc. With my golf going back to VW in a couple of weeks, I'm torn what to do about a new ride. I'd love a model 3, but I'm not sure I can justify the expense. Maybe I should start looking for deals on a used model S. I feel like I need a minimum of 200 miles range. I might get a well used winter beater in the interim. The chevy bolt never really materialized in this area. I can't imagine who would want one over a model 3.
Any chance you can make it to the New Year GTG in New Hampshire? Happy to let you have a go in the AWD 3 and see what you think. Hopefully we'll be able to secure some snow tires by then.

310 miles of EPA rated range is more like 230 miles in the winter, maybe closer to 200 if you're taking shorter trips or slogging through deep snow. A Chevy Bolt and a Model S (except 100D) would both struggle to hit those numbers. Bolt is rated at 238, which would drop to 160 - 180 in the winter.

I'm really curious to see how our roommate's mid-range Model 3 does in the cold weather. It's rated at 260 miles EPA, so probably 170-200 real world range in the winter. We did the math and a 660 mile road trip from DC to Grand Rapids would only add about 30 minutes of charging to his trip compared to ours.
 
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turbobrick240

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Any chance you can make it to the New Year GTG in New Hampshire? Happy to let you have a go in the AWD 3 and see what you think. Hopefully we'll be able to secure some snow tires by then.

310 miles of EPA rated range is more like 230 miles in the winter, maybe closer to 200 if you're taking shorter trips or slogging through deep snow. A Chevy Bolt and a Model S (except 100D) would both struggle to hit those numbers. Bolt is rated at 238, which would drop to 160 - 180 in the winter.

I'm really curious to see how our roommate's mid-range Model 3 does in the cold weather. It's rated at 260 miles EPA, so probably 170-200 real world range in the winter. We did the math and a 660 mile road trip from DC to Grand Rapids would only add about 30 minutes of charging to his trip compared to ours.
It would be awesome to see your new model 3 and everyone at the gtg. My mother has been having some health issues lately, so I might be sticking close to home over the holidays. Plus my golf is going back on the 28th and I may not have a replacement in time for the gtg. I think this will be the first winter in nearly a decade that I don't get down to visit family (and escape the cold)in Austin.

So you guys are a two model 3 household now? Very cool. Your roommate must have been super impressed by your car. A black rwd model 3 arrived at my dentist's office as I was getting out of my car just a couple of days ago. I complimented him on the car and we talked about it for a few minutes. He has taken several road trips with it and mentioned how there are usually good places to grab a bite to eat in very close proximity to the supercharger stations.

I don't understand why so many (supposed) car guys hate on the Teslas. Maybe it's mainly just an affliction of bitter people commenting on Jalopnik articles. First it was they were going bankrupt imminently, then they couldn't make any model 3, and now they are resorting to calling the model 3 ugly. Which is ridiculous since it's one of the best looking cars out there (subjective of course). Jay Leno made a good video recently about Tesla derangement syndrome.
 
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turbobrick240

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Has anyone seen the new electric Truck and SUV from Rivian? Crazy performance specs.
- Starting at $70k
- 0-60 in 3.3s
- ~400 mile range
- 180kWh battery
- 11,000lb towing
- 3' wading depth
Those Rivian vehicles are very impressive. Though well out of my price range even if I were looking for an electric truck. I think they nailed the design other than the oddball headlights. I hope the upcoming Tesla pickup isn't as radical looking as Musk has been hinting at.
 

GoFaster

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turbobrick240

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Damn, and I thought the Harlequin Edition Golf was out there. That must be the Escher edition. :D
 

compu_85

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To be fair, the concepts Rivian has shown look a lot more production ready than those from Faraday Future.

I'd also think making a body on frame design is easier than a unibody. I'm hoping it does come to market!

Regarding the VW: I'll believe it when I can walk into a showroom in Virginia or Michigan, and take one for a test drive. Couldn't do that with the e-Golf (heck an MD dealer wasn't even that interested in leasing one to us 2 years ago!). Won't be able to with the Kona / Niro.

And 0-60 in 9 seconds? I'm hoping that's not the full output. The Leaf is an acceptable 7.5, the Bolt is just over 6. At least they're fitting an 11kw onboard charger.

-J
 
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JDSwan87

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Tesla needs to make a performance minivan. I'd be all over that

EDIT: one that's not $80k
 
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JDSwan87

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What would be a price point to consider buying?
New: $45k for all electric... but I don't want a Pacifica, the back seats suck...

I really like the styling of all the Tesla models, I just can't stomach the price. Also car seats are gigantic now and my family requires 2, 1 rear facing 1 forward facing.

Looking at 2014+ Odyssey's...
 

nwdiver

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New: $45k for all electric... but I don't want a Pacifica, the back seats suck...

I really like the styling of all the Tesla models, I just can't stomach the price. Also car seats are gigantic now and my family requires 2, 1 rear facing 1 forward facing.

Looking at 2014+ Odyssey's...
Maybe another ~2 years before used MXs are available for ~$45k. Right now the most affordable CPO is $60k.
 

bhtooefr

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By "the back seats suck", do you mean the second or the third row?

And if you mean the second row, have you sat in a Pacifica Hybrid specifically? They don't have Stow-n-Go, so their second row doesn't suck for adults to sit in.
 

JDSwan87

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2nd row, non hybrid... I don't need/ want stow n go 2nd row but it appears to be standard... so far the 2014 Ody exl checks all my boxes except fuel economy. I just can't get around how they *only* get 19mpg in the city... As for the ChryCo hybrids, they just plain scare me. Plus the Pacifica interior colors, I mean come on, why the h3ll do they have tan door panels and roof liner but option black seats? I want black or gray seats and black or gray door panels and roof liner to match.
 
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johnnloki

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I really like the styling of all the Tesla models, I just can't stomach the price. Also car seats are gigantic now and my family requires 2, 1 rear facing 1 forward facing.

The Model 3's back seats are unfortunately not that great for car seats and forward facing boosters. A very short sighted design choice.


Take a good look at the Chevrolet Volt - 56 miles battery range and about 350 miles on the gas engine generator. Price $35K or less. Excellent lease terms available.

My household has a Volt. While it's great in a lot of ways, in other ways it's still painfully "Chevy".
 
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turbobrick240

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johnnloki

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Take another look at more of the car seat install reviews on that very site. You'll find the majority of vehicles get almost all "A"s.


Sent from my SM-N920W8 using Tapatalk
 

tikal

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From the Swedish Environmental Research Institute

A more recent study from the Swedish Environmental Research Institute to add to our research on the topic of EVs. I wonder how this would compare to what the Argonne National Labs do in the latest GREE model?

The Life Cycle Energy Consumption and Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Lithium-Ion Batteries

https://www.ivl.se/download/18.5922...CO2+emissions+from+lithium+ion+batteries+.pdf

Summary

This report presents the findings from the Swedish Energy Agency and the Swedish Transport
Administration commissioned study on the Life Cycle energy consumption and greenhouse gas
emissions from lithium-ion batteries. It does not include the use phase of the batteries.
The study consists of a review of available life cycle assessments on lithium-ion batteries for lightduty
vehicles, and the results from the review are used to draw conclusions on how the production
stage impacts the greenhouse gas emissions. The report also focuses on the emissions from each
individual stage of the battery production, including; mining, material refining, refining to battery
grade, and assembly of components and battery.
The report is largely structured based on a number of questions. The questions are divided in two
parts, one focusing on short-term questions and the second on more long-term questions. To sum
up the results of this review of life cycle assessments of lithium-ion batteries we used the questions
as base.

Part 1 – Review the iteratively specified chemistries and answer the following short-term questions
related to the battery production

a) How large are the energy use and greenhouse emissions related to the production of
lithium-ion batteries?
The results from different assessments vary due to a number of factors including battery design,
inventory data, modelling and manufacturing. Based on our review greenhouse gas emissions of
150-200 kg CO2-eq/kWh battery looks to correspond to the greenhouse gas burden of current battery
production. Energy use for battery manufacturing with current technology is about 350 – 650
MJ/kWh battery.

b) How large are the greenhouse gas emissions related to different production steps including
mining, processing and assembly/manufacturing?
Mining and refining seem to contribute a relatively small amount to the current life cycle of the
battery. It is nearly independent of the cell chemistry NMC, LFP or LMO calculated per kWh
capacity. The largest part of the emissions, around 50%, is currently from battery (including cell)
manufacturing, but if the material processing to battery grade is viewed as one total it is in the same
order of magnitude. The reviewed studies vary when it comes to the line between these areas and
transparency is lacking.
When it comes to battery components, the electrodes look to be the dominating contributors. Most of
the other components vary in impact between studies, but electronics seem to have a high impact as
well.

c) What differences are there in greenhouse gas emissions between different production
locations?
This review shows that assuming the current level of emissions from manufacturing, the electricity
mix of the production location greatly impacts the total result. This is due to the fact that the
manufacturing is a large part of the life cycle, and that most of the production energy is electricity.
Since production location currently is based on labor cost it can be important to promote a choice
based on environmental factors as well. Legislation can be one way to ensure this by giving incentive
to choose production location or electricity type based on environmental factors.

d) Do emissions scale with the battery weight and kWh in a linear or non-linear fashion?
Very little data are available on this subject, but what data there are points to a near-linear scale up
of greenhouse gas emissions when the battery size increases. Uncertainty factors include the impact
from the passive components like electronics, as well as the scaling of the production energy with
pack size in future large scale production. Additionally, the pack size is only one factor that varies
when the electric range is increased. Effects on driveline, production and production volumes must
also be assessed.

...
 

Tin Man

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An interesting but limited report on perceived technology of EV's from the Swedish point of view. Hard not to believe some of the data, but the conclusions are similar to "your mileage will vary" statements.

Watched an historical account of the 1066 Battle of Hastings that said the original battlefield is now 6 feet under the current surface. Lots of CO2 storage the natural way in the earth... Makes for an interesting philosophical discussion of how our eco-system actually is a balancing force. The discussion doesn't seem to go into the geological/environmental impact of strip mining raw materials, just greenhouse gases. Battery tech drawbacks aside, the data are useful by themselves, and yes, other reviews like this one need to be done in comparison for better perspective and validity.

Watch for future analysis of greenhouse emissions from humans themselves and lifestyle choices. It's coming.

TM
 
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tikal

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The three Rs

Tin Man, I agree with your general premise of your post. The life cycle environmental footprint of Li-Ion batteries is going to change somewhat from study to study and various perspectives. To me is the trend what is important. Is the overall environmental impact from A to Z (including recycling Li-Ion batteries) diminishing from years ago to now? And what is the outlook? I am overall hopeful.

Regarding our lifestyle choices, that's a more tough question. Are we as individuals, families, etc. doing more RRR from generation to generation: reduce, reuse and recycle?

What 'do I need' vs. 'what do I want' question ...
 

wxman

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There have been a few more recent European studies on the life-cycle impacts of EV:


European Environmental Agency, "Electric vehicles from life cycle and circular economy perspectives, TERM 2018: Transport and Environment Reporting Mechanism (TERM) report." EEA Report No 13/2018, November 2018, https://www.eea.europa.eu/publications/electric-vehicles-from-life-cycle


Beltran et al., "When the Background Matters: Using Scenarios from Integrated Assessment Models in Prospective Life Cycle Assessment." Journal of Industrial Ecology, November 2018, https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/jiec.12825 (open access)


Both take a look at GHG emissions as well as impacts from non-GHG emission.
 

tikal

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Thanks for the links wxman. Is there a somewhat high level comparison between the European models and the latest GREET model in terms of GHG and non-GHG emission impacts? Are there fairly in agreement?
 

turbobrick240

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The big x factor in these LCA's is grid supply. The US grid power supply has become enormously cleaner in the last decade as coal plants have been decommissioned and replaced with nat. gas and renewables. The European grid will likely follow the same path despite nuclear power falling somewhat out of favor. I think most of these reports dramatically underestimate both the adoption rate of EV's and the rate of transition to cleaner power sources going forward into the future.

This article discusses some of the impacts on the US grid if EV's were to supplant ICEV's very rapidly. While the entire grid may not be able to support a 100% transition overnight, that won't happen.

https://www.citylab.com/transportation/2018/12/americas-power-grid-isnt-ready-electric-cars/577507/
 
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wxman

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Thanks for the links wxman. Is there a somewhat high level comparison between the European models and the latest GREET model in terms of GHG and non-GHG emission impacts? Are there fairly in agreement?
The rank order is the same as those studies when using the latest version of the GREET model (GREET_2018):



["Tesla" in the graphic refers to default EV in GREET using the Tesla model of battery manufacturing and 100% renewable grid]

Note that the EEA and Beltran studies look at aquatic and terrestrial damages as well as damages from air pollutants, which is what GREET considers.
 
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